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Posts Tagged ‘holiday memories’

CommercialGrowing up in farm country, preparation for Thanksgiving began late in September or early in October. There were rum cakes to make, and they needed about 6 weeks to get fully soused. And we made cakes for about half the county, I think, besides the ones we made for our family.

And then there was the fudge… Nobody, it seemed, could follow the recipe my mother gave out, so they all came back begging for various sorts in time for Thanksgiving. With a sigh, she began the multiple batches of fudge, from several different chocolate fudges, white fudge and divinity fudge. The house smelled wonderful, but even I, the original chocoholic, got tired of the scent of chocolate.

A few days before Thanksgiving, the pies began coming out of the oven. Everybody had a favorite, so the scents of pumpkin, apple, mince meat, and elderberry wafted through the house.

And where would we be without spice cake and home made bread? We had two ovens in the kitchen and we kept them going for days before the holidays.

Thanksgiving morning had a special tradition at our house. Dad, my sister, Linda, and I got up early, dressed warmly and headed out to the fields to go pheasant hunting. In northern Ohio, there was usually snow on the ground and the weeds along the fences sparkled in the morning sunlight. The snow crunched and squeaked beneath our boots and our breath became little puffs of fog as we walked along.

Once in a while we actually scared up a pheasant, but mostly it was just special time with Dad. He’d talk about the various trees in the woods and fence rows and how to identify them by their bark. Or he’d tell old family stories about growing up in Tennessee in the early 1900’s.

By around 11:00, we’d be back in the house, by the fire, drinking coffee or hot cocoa. Then we girls would join Mom in the kitchen to put the finishing touches on dinner before guests began to arrive. The smells from the ovens was inviting and all the baked goods displayed in the dining room just begged to be tasted as we set the table.

Thanksgiving dinner was a wonderful time to be together with family and friends. The food was always exquisite, the company warm and jovial. But to me, the magic of Thanksgiving was that early morning stroll through the countryside with Dad, pheasants or no pheasants.

Wishing you all the best this Thanksgiving Day. Share your traditions with us. Together we can build new memories.

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